REASON, MATURITY, AND INITIATION: EXPLORING THE AGE OF CONFIRMATION

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A Paper Presented to Dr. Scott Hahn Franciscan University of Steubenville

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In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Course THE314 D The Sacraments

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by John Paul Dominic Brodeur May 2011 Box #217

REASON, MATURITY, AND INITIATION: EXPLORING THE AGE OF CONFIRMATION The history of Confirmation in the Catholic Church is a long and arduous study, and even to this day, the sacrament of Confirmation searches for a defining theology. The primary reason for confusion arises from the variety in its practice. Indeed, in the diverse practice of Confirmation, the modern Church experiences the ramifications of one of its oldest idioms: “Lex orandi, lex credendi,” “The law of worship is the law of belief.” When the liturgical practice of Confirmation is so diverse that it seemingly contradicts itself or serves dual purposes, the faithful are deprived of the insights necessary to further probe the mystery of Faith. Thus, it is of the utmost importance that an account be made of the current situation in light of Sacred Tradition, in order to appropriate the most essential truths needed to reform the practice of the sacrament at large. With such intent, this paper will explore the age of Confirmation in widespread practice and as it is prescribed in the Church‟s Tradition so as to theologically distinguish between essential and non-essential purposes of the sacramental practice. In a 2004 document entitled Receive the Gift: the Age of Confirmation, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) enumerates the variety of occasions and age ranges during which Confirmation may be administered: “Nonbaptized adults and nonbaptized children of catechetical age celebrate Confirmation within the ceremony of their Baptism; Those baptized Catholic as infants or very young children are confirmed in childhood, adolescence, and even adulthood; Adults baptized in other Christian churches are confirmed during the „Rite of Reception of Baptized Christians into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church;‟ Catholics in danger of death are confirmed at whatever age they find themselves to be in danger; Infants in the Eastern Catholic Churches are confirmed (chrismated) immediately after receiving Baptism.” i The most diverse category in the aforementioned list is “Cradle Catholics,” those who have been baptized in their infancy, a normative majority of Latin Catholics. According to the USCCB, the 2

3 age of Confirmation in this group ranges from childhood through adolescence, and even into adulthood. All other groups mentioned have normative prescriptions for the reception of Confirmation: Non-baptized children and adults of catechetical age as well as children born in Eastern churches all receive Confirmation with the ceremony of their Baptism; adults being accepted into the Church are likewise confirmed at the same time; any Catholic in danger of death may receive the sacrament because of the urgency which his situation provides him. Why, then, do “Cradle Catholics” have such diversity in the age at which they receive the sacrament? The answer to this question can be found in the Code of Canon Law canon 891 which sets the norm for all Catholics baptized as infants or young children in the Latin Catholic Church: “The sacrament of confirmation is to be conferred on the faithful at about the age of discretion unless the conference of bishops has determined another age…”ii Effective since

July 1, 2002, the United States has a complementary legislation for this canon. It reads: “The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, in accord with the prescriptions of canon 891, hereby decrees that the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Latin Rite shall be conferred between the age of discretion and about sixteen years of age, within the limits determined by the diocesan bishop and with regard for the legitimate exceptions given in canon 891.”iii Thus, each diocesan bishop is ultimately responsible for determining the necessary limits for his particular diocese. iv The legal range within which he is allowed to legislate is from 7 to 16 years of age, a difference of about 9 years. When enacting legislation concerning the age of Confirmation, a local bishop may enact an age range coterminous with the national range (including all 9 years), a more limited age range within the national range (e.g. ages 12-14), or a single age within the national range.v According to the USCCB, considerations of the local bishop should include first, the theology of Confirmation; second, the history of the sacrament; third, the availability of ministers for the conferral of the sacrament; fourth, parish catechetical structures and programs; and fifth, the standard age of neighboring diocese.vi The USCCB provides some helpful analysis regarding typical limited age ranges currently effective in various dioceses throughout the United States. The first of these is the “age

4 of discretion” (also known as “the age of reason”) which coincides with First and Second Grade. As such, it also coincides with the legally prescribed age for the ordinary reception of first Penance and first Holy Communion.vii The USCCB goes on to enumerate the overwhelming benefits of Confirming during this age range: First, children will have some comprehension of the event (since they have reached the age of reason); second, they benefit from the grace of the Holy Spirit as soon as possible; third, it is more likely that those who receive Holy Communion will receive Confirmation; fourth, they gain the ability to follow the natural sequence of the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, then Confirmation, then Holy Communion – the same sequence followed by the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adultsviii and Eastern Catholic Churches; fifth, the initiatory aspect of the sacrament is made clearer;ix and sixth, the Eucharist is more clearly signified as the “summit”x of Christian initiation.xi Significant challenges to the practice of Confirmation during this age range are also enumerated: First, a large catechetical demand is placed on young children, who receive three sacraments (Penance, Confirmation, and first Holy Communion) all within a very short period of time. That is why common practice in this range is to celebrate Confirmation in the first grade, and first Holy Communion in the second grade. Second, there is a declining incentive for continuing catechesis afterward. Finally, it renders Confirmation incapable of marking the passage from childhood to adulthood. It is too early a time for the child to begin taking an adult responsibility for his faith and actions.xii The next age range presented by the USCCB is that which coincides with the Fifth and Sixth Grades. Here, the bishops observe a more expansive period of preparation, allowing children more time to absorb the mysteries between the time they receive first Holy Communion and the time they receive the sacrament of Confirmation. However, Confirming during this period still respects the “impulse of the Church to provide the gift of the Holy Spirit to young children as soon as is possible.”xiii A significant challenge which they denote is how the initiatory aspect of Confirmation has already become obscured.xiv

5 A third age range which they present coincides with young adolescents in Grades Seven through Nine. The USCCB speaks highly about the new layers of meaning which can be derived from the experience of puberty and a new level of education.xv It forcibly reiterates how well it coincides with human maturation, stressing that particular aspects of the theology of Confirmation can be emphasized more effectively: strengthening, becoming more like Christ, bearing witness, and being bound more closely to the Church all capture the attention of adolescents entering high school in ways that disinterest most younger children.xvi Another benefit which the bishops find is the opportunity provided for catechesis independent of sacramental preparation.xvii The two challenges listed are challenges related to the proper identification of the sacrament. It is now further unrecognizable as an initiation rite, and it is still too early in the human maturation process to consider it a maturity rite.xviii The final age range provided in the USCCB document coincides with Tenth to Eleventh Grades. The bishops take note of how Confirmation at this age bolsters the pastoral care that the Church can provide through community, catechesis, and sacraments. They also list how Confirmation at this age ritualizes the self-appropriation of faith and the ongoing conversion which is the natural end of progressive catechesis. Finally, they observe, “Catholic youth in this age group are particularly enlivened by a sense of active Christian social responsibility, and they often perform marvelous works for the good of the Church and the wider local community.”xix Despite these enumerated benefits, the USCCB also lists a surprisingly long list of challenges (both pastoral & theological) which Confirmation creates during this period. First, in this particular age range, the bishops observe a growing disinterest in the Church propelled by a pressure both from within and from without to gain independence from those values commonly held by the family and the community. “Some diocese,” they write, “offer Confirmation to youth in this age group in order to channel their energy, to encourage their questions about Christ and the Church, and to deepen their awareness of the truths they discover through more intense catechesis.”xx A second challenge is signifying the Eucharist as the climax of the initiation process.xxi Third, they observe a common misinterpretation of Baptism as a non-denominational

6 “Christian” initiation which is made “Catholic” by Confirmation once the faith has been appropriated. In this line of thinking, to refuse Confirmation would be equivalent to rejecting Catholicism, but adult faith, the bishops remind the reader, should not be confused with adult age of natural growth. The catechism is also cited to express how the grace of baptism does not need human ratification to become effective.xxii A fourth challenge is clarifying adolescent commitment: not undervaluing the weekly recitation of the creed, reception of Holy Communion, and the annual renewal of Baptismal vows at Easter. “These rituals already presume their commitment. They express the reality that there is one Church, not that there is one for youth and another for adults. All of the baptized form one Church in Christ. …Recommitment is not a once-in-a-lifetime event, but Confirmation is a once-in-a-lifetime sacrament.”xxiii A fifth challenge presented is the result of identifying adolescent Confirmation as a sacrament of commitment. This creates an inconsistent understanding of the sacrament, especially in relation to other common instances of its reception. The final challenge enumerated is the misrepresentation of the gift of the Holy Spirit as a kind of reward for catechetical study.xxiv In the USCCB‟s analysis, an attentive reader may discover two particular approaches to the sacrament of Confirmation which seem to create a sort of unresolvable tension. The first is identifying the sacrament with Christian initiation, and the second is identifying the sacrament with human maturation as it is analogous to spiritual maturation. Each seems to be given equal preference by the Bishop‟s Conference, but each seems to crowd out the significance of the other. How can this tension be effectively resolved? Does either one of these descriptions take precedence over the other? Thankfully, there are fairly clear answers to these questions, and they are embedded in the great wealth of Sacred Tradition. Bishop Robert Joseph Cunningham writes that the tradition of the Church stresses two crucial ideas: the first being a constant refusal to disassociate baptism and confirmation, and the second being a constant refusal to reduce confirmation to being simply a stage within the sacrament of baptism.xxv Indeed, even as Confirmation began being celebrated independent of

7 Baptism, reasoning power was not an essential pre-requisite for confirmation.xxvi Canon 786 of the Corpis Juris Canonici reads, “In order that one may receive confirmation licitly and with fruit, he must be in the state of grace, and if he has the use of reason, he must be sufficiently instructed.”xxvii This teaching was further clarified by a response of the Sacred Congregation of the Sacraments in 1934 detailing what sufficient instruction meant. It decreed that in preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation, the child should receive instruction “according to his capacity, upon the nature, dignity, [and] effects of the sacrament, and on the requisite conditions for its worthy reception”xxviii – “not therefore,” as Marian Bohen writes, “an intensive instruction covering all of Christian doctrine, to be examined by the bishop.”xxix This same decree of 1934 makes provision for a dying infant to receive the sacrament of Confirmation so that “upon leaving this life he may… have greater glory in heaven.”xxx Additionally, the order of the sacraments of initiation has a strong tradition in the Church‟s history. In 1281, the thirteenth-century Council of Lambeth actually prohibited those who had not yet received Confirmation from receiving the Eucharist.xxxi In the mid-19th century, several councils of French bishops began legislating that first Holy Communion should precede Confirmation instead – much like the common American practice today. Shortly after Florian-Jules-Félix Desprez was appointed to the new diocese of La Réunion, he convened a council during which he considered the age of confirmation. Among the resulting ordinances was included the following: “The pastor will only need to present to us for confirmation those persons who have made their first communion or who should make it within the course of the year.”xxxii However, once the Sacred Congregation of the Council in Rome read this, a change was immediately requested on the basis of what was already deemed an historical precedent: “Since for a long time a lower age has been required for admittance to the sacrament of confirmation than for admittance to first communion, as the Roman Catechism offers in "Confirmation", (number 18) and as Benedict XIV teaches in "Diocesan Synod" (book 7, chapter 10, numbers 2 and 3), it is proposed to you that the doctrine reported (article 22, p. 19 in the Synodal Acts) be reformed accordingly, so that the first place may be for conferring confirmation, and then, at an opportune time, for supplying first communion.”xxxiii

8 The First Vatican Council is even bolder in its portrayal of the traditional sequence of the sacraments. It calls the sequence a “perpetual practice” and dismisses the reverse order as “absurd:” “Since in some places a custom contrary to the perpetual practice of the church has grown up, in which confirmation is administered by an absurd order only to those who have already been admitted to the most holy sacrament of the eucharist, we wish this to be corrected completely; especially since one who has already begun to fight against the enemy should not be kept from armor. It should be clear, as St. Thomas Aquinas says, that many in the age of childhood have fought bravely for the sake of Christ because of the strength of the Holy Spirit they have received.”xxxiv Pope Leo XIII, in a letter Abrogata to the Bishop of Marseilles dated June 22, 1897, reapproved the practice of conferring Confirmation before first Holy Communion. He wrote: “That opinion [of administering first Holy Communion before Confirmation] which had grown strong there [in France] and in other places corresponded neither to the old and constant intent of the church, nor to the advantage of the faithful. For the beginnings of cupidity are in the souls of children. Unless they are erased as early as possible, they gradually grow stronger, entice those inexperienced in matters, and lead to great danger. Therefore the faithful, even from the tender years, have a need "to be clothed with strength from on high," which the sacrament of confirmation was born to produce. In it, as St. Thomas Aquinas rightly notes, the Holy Spirit is given for the strength of the spiritual fight and humanity is advanced spiritually to a mature age. Moreover, adolescents having thus been confirmed become more conformable to understanding precepts, and more fit for receiving the Eucharist afterwards, and they grasp more abundant benefits from what they receive.”xxxv These words of Pope Leo XIII are simply remarkable. He plainly asserts that receiving first Holy Communion prior to Confirmation is to the disadvantage of the faithful – but he does not simply express an opinion. He confidently calls upon the tradition as his witness, and he emphasizes the great aid which the sacrament can provide adolescents who have already received it. He understands the sacrament of Confirmation as a means of readying the child for a more fitting reception of the Eucharist, interpreting Confirmation as a source of mysterious capacity for spiritual development when receiving Holy Communion. In 1932, the Sacred Congregation on the Sacraments made the most direct statement of any Roman congregation and for the first time linked Confirmation with Baptism:

9 “It is truly opportune and more conformable to the nature and effects of the sacrament of confirmation, that children should only approach the sacred table for the first time after the reception of the sacrament of confirmation, which is, as it were, the complement of baptism and in which is given the fullness of the Holy Spirit (St. Thomas, III, q. 72, art. 2). However, these same should not be considered prohibited from the same table before they are admitted, if they had attained the years of discretion, even though they were not able to receive the sacrament of confirmation previously.”xxxvi Thus, while the Sacred Congregation on the Sacraments declares an explicit preference for the reception of Confirmation prior to first Holy Communion, it does not refuse the unconfirmed faithful from receiving the Eucharist like the Council of Lambeth did. Even more convincing is how in 1948, the Statutes of Limoges which had once read “It is very desirable that all children presented for confirmation already have been admitted to communion”xxxvii were amended to read, “It is very desirable that children admitted to communion have been presented for confirmation.”xxxviii Finally, in the Second Vatican Council‟s apostolic constitution on the Rite of Confirmation (Divinae consortium naturae), Paul VI wrote reaffirming the traditional sequence of the sacraments of initiation: “The sharing in the divine nature given to men through the grace of Christ bears a certain likeness to the origin, development, and nourishing of natural life. The faithful are born anew by Baptism, strengthened by the sacrament of Confirmation, and receive in the Eucharist the food of eternal life. By means of these sacraments of Christian initiation, they thus receive in increasing measure the treasures of the divine life and advance toward the perfection of charity.”xxxix For Paul VI, there is a kind Eucharistic direction in the celebration of the sacraments of initiation such that both baptism and confirmation find their end in the Sacrament of Charity. This is a significant theme for Pope Benedict XVI. In his work on the Eucharist he writes, “It must never be forgotten that our reception of Baptism and Confirmation is ordered to the Eucharist. Accordingly, our pastoral practice should reflect a more unitary understanding of the process of Christian initiation.”xl In the modern day and age, the exceptional practices of Confirmation also shed light on the true identity of Confirmation as a sacrament. All non-baptized children who have reached

10 the age of discretion are treated as adults as far as Baptism is concerned,xli meaning that they are enrolled in the catechumenate and are confirmed at their Baptism, usually during the Easter Vigil.xlii The fact that non-baptized children over 7 years of age are treated as adults is a striking contrast to the model of Confirmation as a “sacrament of maturation” among adolescents who would seemingly be something less than an adult prior to Confirmation. Additionally, persons with mental disorders and developmental disabilities remain eligible for the sacrament of Confirmation, further reinforcing the case against the need for intellectual maturity as a prerequisite.xliii Furthermore, according to canon law, a priest can still confirm anyone in danger of death, including infantsxliv – suggesting that the essential aspect of Confirmation is something more significant than “maturation,” be it human or spiritual. One final thing worth noting is how the current Rite of Confirmation foresees the possibility that children celebrating the sacrament of Confirmation may not have previously received their First Holy Communion: “If the candidates for confirmation are children who have not received the Eucharist and are not admitted to their first communion at this liturgical celebration or if there are other special circumstances, confirmation should be celebrated outside Mass.”xlv What conclusions can be derived from all of this? As Bohen observes, some see Confirmation as the “sacrament of maturity …as the crown of catechetical formation, and as an initiation into adult life.” According to Bohen‟s assessment, it is primarily the desire for catechetical formation as preparation for the sacrament that favors a later age.xlvi While the arguments may look convincing when the primary concern of the sacrament is maturity in a physical or intellectual sense this end is not essential to Confirmation, nor even of primary importance.xlvii To understand Confirmation as a rite of passage into physical and intellectual maturation simultaneously linked with a kind of spiritual maturation is a horrible misrepresentation of the spiritual life and a gross undervaluation of God‟s grace. Perhaps a more accurate analogy to physical maturation during adolescence is what happens at the age of reason, when the soul becomes capable of moral actions. Like the body‟s newfound ability to procreate after puberty, the soul of a child after having reached the age of reason is now capable of being a

11 moral example to others, a spiritual “father” even to far older individuals than himself who witness the child‟s example. Similar to the way puberty continues even after sexual faculties are developed, so too does the growing capacity of reason continue to provide the child with greater wisdom and conformity to Christ, even after the age of discretion begins. The great danger of using the analogy of physical maturation as a starting point is the tendency to project very meaningful physical realities into the spiritual dimension in ways that undervalue or misinterpret the true spiritual reality of what is taking place. No intellectual, physical, or even psychological developments could ever accurately measure spiritual maturity. As to the matter of Confirmation as a catechetical incentive, Bohen writes, “It hardly seems justifiable …to hold back one of God‟s saving sacraments as a kind of bribe, depriving the children of the grace of the sacrament because of a possible lack on the part of the parents.”xlviii Catechetics begins in the home; it is a fundamental responsibility of the parents to pass on the Faith to their children. Additionally, the dynamic of that catechesis ought not to be minimalist or begrudging, but enlivened with a true sense of intimacy. If catechetics is employed well, then there is no need for sacramental incentive to reinforce a further study of the Faith, nor would it feel “demanding.” Either way, the true sense of the sacrament as a gift of the Holy Spirit is utterly lost when it becomes some kind of reward for an individual‟s religious efforts or a kind of spiritual graduation ceremony. Disassociating Confirmation from the completion of catechetical training would likely be very effective in remedying much of the confusion currently surrounding the true meaning of the sacrament. The USCCB is very helpful when it reiterates a most basic and essential truth about the sacrament: “Through Confirmation one receives the fullness of the gift of the Holy Spirit that was given in Baptism;”xlix and quoting the Catechism of the Catholic Church, it later remarks: “The reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace.”l What exactly does this mean? Perhaps the exact meaning ought to be at least somewhat elusive. It certainly does not mean that the unconfirmed Catholic has only a fragment

12 of the Holy Spirit. In the state of grace, every baptized Catholic experiences the extraordinary grace of the Divine Indwelling Trinity, whole and entire. So what‟s missing? Cunningham provides a remarkable insight when he writes, “Baptism and confirmation can only be stood in relation to each other.”li He describes them like two sources of light which illuminate the same landscape.lii There‟s Easter and then there‟s Pentecost. There‟s Rebirth in Christ and then there‟s Life in the Spirit. There‟s the experience of being saved from sin and then there‟s the obligation to spread the gospel. Are any of these things really independent of the other? In their truest simplicity, no, they are not. In a similar way, the meaning of Confirmation can never be emancipated from the meaning of Baptism. It‟s “fullness” and “completion” is precisely realized in the dynamism of the Christian life which lies ahead. It is a realization of the true purpose of Baptism: not a stagnant character by which a man is redeemed, but a living character which has an external orientation: “Through the sacrament of Confirmation, they are bound more perfectly to the Church; they are endowed with special strength of the Holy Spirit, and are thus more strictly obliged, as true witnesses of Christ, to spread and defend the faith by word and deed.”liii Thus, by their Confirmation, the faithful are called out of the upper room, not into a new life, but into the consummation of the new life they have already received from Christ: “The effect of the sacrament is that the Holy Spirit is given for strength, as he was given to the apostles on the day of Pentecost, in order that Christians may courageously confess the name of Christ.”liv This grace of the sacrament of Confirmation is one which most certainly can be enacted in the life of a seven year-old child. Perhaps the immensity of the gift will not overwhelm him or even cause him to pause very long to reflect upon it initially, but ought that to be the standard by which the sacrament is administered? Bohen puts it aptly, “If every other consideration indicates that the sacrament of confirmation should be given at about the age of reason, is it just to deprive the child of the sacrament at the proper age solely to impress him? He may be more mature in reasoning power at a later age, but will he be as receptive as at the dawn of reason?”lv How beautiful it is to see a child receive first Holy Communion! He receives Christ‟s Body and

13 Blood with such an innocent faith! Why then wait until the Eleventh Grade to provide that child with the graces he needs to persevere and develop in that Faith? It is little wonder why unconfirmed Eleventh Graders are so hard to keep in the pews! Thus Bohen concludes with three reasons for having Confirmation at the age of reason: first, out of obedience to the directions in Canon Law; second, out of conformity with the true nature of the sacrament as a completion of baptism; and third, to satisfy the need of the child for the gift of the Spirit at the beginning of his period of serious religious instruction.lvi Bohen also adds that if there remains any subsequent need for a kind of religious ceremony of commitment apart from the sacrament throughout the high school years, it can be performed just as well outside the sacrament without usurping the sacrament for its own ends:lvii “If the goal – a catechesis which corresponds both to the truth of the Christian faith and tradition and to the spiritual needs of the child – will be achieved by means of a revolution, then that revolution will be eminently worthwhile.”lviii

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Receive the Gift: the Age of Confirmation (Washington, D.C.: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2004), 1. ii Code of Canon Law (Codex Juris Canonici), Latin-English ed. (Washington, D.C.: Canon Law Society of America, 1983), c. 891. iii Joseph Fiorenza, “USCCB - Canon 891 - Age for Confirmation,” United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, http://www.usccb.org/norms/891.htm (accessed May 6, 2011). iv Receive the Gift, 3. v Ibid., 4. vi Ibid., 4-5. vii CIC, c. 914. viii Congregation for Divine Worship, Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (Washington, DC: USCCB, 1988). ix Receive the Gift, 7-8. x Catechism of the Catholic Church (New York: Doubleday, 1995), no. 1233. xi RCIA, no. 243. xii Receive the Gift, 8-9. xiii Ibid., 9-10. xiv Ibid., 10. xv Ibid., 11. xvi Ibid. xvii Ibid. xviii Ibid., 12. xix Ibid. xx Ibid., 13. xxi RCIA, no. 243.

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CCC, no. 1308. Receive the Gift, 13-14. xxiv Ibid., 14. xxv Joseph Cunningham, Confirmation: Pastoral concerns (Collegeville, Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1973), 47. xxvi Marian Bohen, The Mystery of Confirmation, a Theology of the Sacrament (New York: Herder and Herder, 1963), 145. xxvii CIC, c. 786. xxviii Acta Apostolicae Sedis, XXVII (1935), 11-12, tr. Lincoln T. Bouscaren, in The Canon Law Digest, Vol. II: 1933-1942 (Milwaukee: The Bruce Publishing Co., 1943), p. 188. xxix Bohen, 34. xxx Acta Apostolicae Sedis , p. 187. xxxi Bohen, 141. xxxii Paul Turner, “Benedict XVI and the sequence of the sacraments of initiation.” Paul Turner. www.paulturner.org/pdf_files/initiation_sacraments.pdf (accessed May 6, 2011). xxxiii Ibid. xxxiv Ibid. xxxv Ibid. xxxvi Ibid. xxxvii Ibid. xxxviii Ibid. xxxix Second Vatican Council, Apostolic constitution On the Rite of Confirmation (Divinae consortium naturae), AAS 63 (1971), 657. Quoted in CCC, no. 1212. xl Benedict XVI, “Post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation Sacramentum Caritatis,” Vatican: the Holy See. http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/apost_exhortations/documents/hf_benxvi_exh_20070222_sacramentum-caritatis_en.html (accessed May 6, 2011), 17. xli CIC, c. 852§1. xlii Receive the Gift, 15. xliii United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Guidelines for the Celebration of the Sacraments with Persons with Disabilities (Washington, DC: USCCB, 1995), no. 16. xliv CIC, c. 883, 3° xlv Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, Study ed. Ottawa, Ont.: Conference's Publication Service, 1974). xlvi Bohen, 141. xlvii Ibid., 142. xlviii Ibid. xlix Receive the Gift, 5. l CCC, no. 1285. li Cunningham, 47. lii Ibid. liii Second Vatican Council, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium), in J. Neuner and J. Dupuis, eds., The Christian Faith, 7th ed. (New York: Alba House, 2001), no. 1439. liv Council of Florence (1439), Decree for the Armenians, The Christian Faith, no. 1418 (DS 1319). lv Bohen, 143. lvi Ibid., 141-2. lvii Ibid., 143. lviii Ibid., 147.
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